Wedding Planning Timeline

From the bride and groom to all in attendance, everyone loves a good wedding. But to put on a good wedding, you have to be a great planner. Wedding planning is exhausting, we know. There's so much to do, order, reserve, and buy. That's exactly why we did a little research and made a timeline for your wedding checklist. It's a long list, but you don't have to incorporate everything on it into your wedding. We just thought of as much as we could!

9-12+ Months Before
  • Work out a budget
  • Choose your bridal party
  • Start working on a guest list
  • Choose a date
  • Research vendors & set up times to meet with them
  • Book wedding planner
  • Start looking for a wedding gown
6-8 Months Before
  • Choose which colors you want in your wedding
  • Purchase a gown
  • Send save the dates
  • Start wedding registry
  • Hire a photographer
4-5 Months Before
  • Book your venue
  • Book vendors (4 months)
  • Order bridesmaids' dresses
  • Brainstorm hair & makeup ideas
  • Start working on invitations
  • Order wedding cake
2-3 Months Before
  • Purchase wedding bands
  • Pick out groom and groomsmen attire
  • Send invitations (2 months)
  • Create playlist for DJ/band
  • Book hair & makeup
  • Plan your honeymoon
1 Month Before
  • Get marriage license
  • Have dress alterations
  • Purchase any accessories you still need
  • Pick out bridal party gifts
1 Week Before
  • Confirm headcount and arrival times with vendors
  • Get your nails done
  • Confirm shot list with photographer
  • Pack for your honeymoon

XO, The I Do Team

Our Top Picks for Your First Dance & Father Daughter Dance

Your first dance and father daughter dance are both such happy and heartfelt moments. With all eyes on you and your husband or you and your dad/father figure, you have to make sure you pick the perfect song. The I Do Team listened to dozens of songs to bring you a short and sweet list of what we think would make a great addition to your wedding playlist. Enjoy!

First Dance Songs

  • Have I Told You Lately - Rod Stewart
  • Come Away With Me - Norah Jones
  • It Had To Be You - Harry Connick, Jr.
  • Beyond - Leon Bridges
  • You and I - Michael Buble
  • You Are The Reason - Calum Scott & Leon Lewis
  • Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You - Frankie Valli
  • Forever Like That - Ben Rector
  • Hold Me - Stevie Wonder
  • Grow Old With Me - Tom Odell
  • From This Moment On - Shania Twain

Father Daughter Dance Songs

  • Daughters - John Mayer
  • Cinderella - Steven Curtis Chapman
  • Because You Loved Me - Celine Dion
  • Tiny Dancer - Elton John
  • What A Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong
  • In My Daughters Eyes - Martina McBride
  • Landslide - Fleetwood Mac
  • I Loved Her First - Heartland
  • My Little Girl - Tim McGraw
  • You'll Be In My Heart - Phil Collins

A Guide to Your Pre-Wedding Parties

Your first time planning a wedding, or even being in one, comes with the realization of how many events you're supposed to host and attend before the big day. It can get confusing trying to figure out which parties you host, which parties people host for you, and who to invite to what party. Have no fear!! That's why we've created this guide for you detailing all of the pre-wedding events. We hope it helps brides we serve at our Baton Rouge, La bridal boutique and our new bridal boutique location in Covington, La serving brides in Mandeville, New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. 

Engagement Party

This one is pretty self-explanatory. An engagement party is just a party to celebrate that you're getting married so that everyone can obsess over you, your fiancé, and of course, the ring. This party is usually hosted by the bride's family or her soon-to-be-spouse's family and tends to happen within a couple of months after the engagement. The engagement party can be big or small, but keep in mind that for all of these parties you're going to want to mix up your guest list.

Bridal Shower

This party is all about the bride and is most often hosted by the maid of honor and the bridesmaids. The bridal shower is an all-girls affair to eat some brunch, lunch, or whatever you're feeling and play a few wedding themed games. The bride also opens the gifts given to her by all the ladies in attendance in front of everyone (this is why you should register so you can get fun things you want/need). A bridal shower is usually scheduled during the day about three or so months before the wedding at the home of one of the hosts.

Couples Shower

A couples shower is the same idea as a bridal shower, except men and women from both sides of the wedding party attend. You can choose to have a bridal shower, a couples shower, or even both if you'd like! This is all about you, have whatever parties you want.

Bachelorette Party

The bachelorette party is a night (or weekend) dedicated to celebrating the last moments of freedom..just kidding!! What I mean is that a bachelorette party for the bride and bachelor party for the groom is just a chance to go crazy OR relax with their closest friends before the chaos of the wedding and married life sinks in. A bachelorette party has been stereotyped as a wild, raging night of bar hopping and clubbing, but there are no guidelines you have to follow when choosing a destination. Go to Napa for some wine, have a relaxing spa weekend, get some sun on the beach, or head over to Vegas! It's totally up to you. Bachelorette parties/trips are planned and hosted by the maid of honor and bridesmaids about a month or so before the big day.

Bridesmaid Luncheon

Hosted by the bride, the bridesmaid luncheon is a way for the bride to thank her bridal party for being by her side through all the hectic wedding planing. This is one of the more intimate gatherings and usually takes place the day before the wedding once everyone has gotten in town. The bride and her bridesmaids typically enjoy brunch or lunch at a restaurant or other spot in town, but this party can be held wherever you'd like.

Rehearsal Dinner

This is when everything starts to feel real. The rehearsal dinner is a smaller gathering, usually just the families and the wedding party, held the night before the ceremony. This is where, you guessed it, you rehearse the wedding. Who's escorting who, what order you walk down the aisle in, and all of those fun details are ironed out at this party. After all of that's out of the way, the guests sit down, eat some dinner, and share toasts to the bride and groom. This event is usually hosted by the groom's family.

So many parties on top of so much wedding planning. These are just a few helpful tips, but there is no book of rules on how to have your pre-wedding parties. Do it however you'd like! We know it's stressful, but don't forget that it's also fun.

XO, The I Do Team

6 Things to Keep in Mind when Shopping for your Wedding Gown

Too many brides get stressed out over finding the perfect wedding dress. So here we are to help you by telling you six simple things to remember when shopping for your gown.

Timing is Everything

A wedding dress and a dress you're wearing to your best friends birthday party don't require the same amount of planning. For the party, you can pop into your favorite boutique a week, day, or even hour in advance. For your wedding, most wedding gowns take four to six months to come in. Maybe even longer if you're doing a custom gown. To play it safe, you might as well go ahead and make an appointment as soon as you get engaged. That way, you have plenty of time to focus on the rest of the excitement that comes with planning a wedding.

Don't Be Too Close Minded

Every week we have brides come in with an exact idea of what they want their gown to look like. This is totally fine!! We want you to know what you're looking for, BUT it's also a good idea to be open to different styles. We've had countless brides tell us they want an A-Line gown with straps who end up leaving with a strapless mermaid gown, or vice versa. When you're looking for the perfect gown, we know you want it to be just that. "Perfect." But there's so many routes you can take to get to perfect, so don't get too dead set on a vision.

Trust Us

This one kind of goes off of the last one. It's so important to trust your bridal attendants. They know the gowns like the back of their hand and have probably seen dozens of people try them on. They're there to make you look like the most beautiful bride anyone's ever seen, so they aren't going to act like a bunch of cheesy salesmen and tell you that everything looks great on you so you'll spend some money. They're not going to let you walk out of their doors in something that looks bad, for your sake and for theirs.

Trust Your Gut

If the dress feels like the one, deep down to your core, then it probably is. Don't let your friends and family influence your decision. Their opinion is obviously important, but it shouldn't make or break what you want to do. Don't forget that it's YOUR day, not theirs.

Sometimes the First One is the Right One

I feel like people get it in their head that wedding dress shopping has to be a long and exhausting experience. So when they fall in love with the first gown they try on, they think it's too good to be true. Wrong!! If you love it and it feels right, then who cares when you tried it on?!

Stop Shopping

Once you find the perfect gown, just go celebrate. Don't keep looking at the bridal magazines and delete your Pinterest boards. Continuing to look will result second guessing yourself, and that's never any fun. So just, stop.


The I Do Team

Wedding Traditions & Where They Come From

Your big day, your special day, your wedding day; whatever you want to call it. It's a big deal, or at least we think so. Some make it a bigger deal than others, but there's no denying that it's a day filled with memories that will last a lifetime. Every wedding is different, but there are a few traditions we always see. Does anyone really know why we add them to our wedding planning checklists? Or what they even mean? We didn't, so we looked into six of the most commonly seen wedding traditions and dug a little deeper to figure out where they come from.

Wedding Cakes

Before there were four-tiered extravagant wedding cakes, there was just a simple piece of bread. Yep...just bread. The tradition was for grooms to take a bite of bread and then crumble the rest over the bride's head for good luck. The guests would then race to pick up the fallen crumbs so they could absorb some of the good luck. Over the years, the tradition transformed to the bride pushing pieces of her cake through her ring to the guests for them to take home and put under their pillow, believing it would bring them good luck. I think I speak for everyone when I say I feel lucky enough to get a slice of cake on a plate, not the ground and not out of a tiny ring.

White Gown

Nothing makes me giddyer than thinking about strolling down the aisle in a white ball gown. But until the mid 1800s, brides actually wore red on their wedding day. Queen Victoria started the now ongoing tradition of wearing a white gown when she married Prince Albert around 1840. She chose white because the color symbolized wealth, but today a lot of people see it as a symbol of purity. We just think it looks good!

Something Old, New, Borrowed, and Blue

Why does a bride always have to have something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue? It's a catchy little saying, but I had to know why it was a thing. Something old represents the bride's ties to her family and past. So, basically, having something old says that even though you're getting married you won't forget where you came from. Something new is a representation of the new life ahead for the bride. Something borrowed is supposed to be an item that comes from someone in a successful marriage to pass along the good luck, so I would be sure to choose this one wisely. Something blue symbolizes faithfulness, loyalty, and purity which seem like three pretty important things to have represented in your wedding. All four of these "somethings" are definitely a tradition we stand behind.

Wedding Veil

Way back when, families looked at their daughters as a commodity and would place them in an arranged marriage to increase both families' assets. Most of the time the bride and groom would meet for the first time at the altar, so the veil was worn to cover the bride's face until the end of the ceremony so the groom couldn't back out of the marriage. Pretty harsh, right?! Thankfully, the veil now symbolizes the bride's virtue and is usually used as an accessory to pull the whole look together.

Ring Bearer & His Pillow

So obviously someone has to carry the rings down the aisle, but why a little boy? And why does he carry them on a pillow? We found out the pillow represents your dreams coming true and a child is usually the one carrying it because they represent innocence, the future, and new beginnings. Lately there's been a trend of people using their dogs as a ring bearer, and that's definitely something we support.

Engagement Rings

Who doesn't absolutely obsess over engagement rings?! Even if you're not the type to obsess over what your own ring looks like, it's hard to resist admiring your recently engaged friend's ring. And there's so many to choose from! Gold or platinum band? Diamond or no diamond? If you do want a diamond, do you want oval, round, princess, pear, or emerald shaped? I mean, the possibilities are endless. Anyways, back to the point, engagement rings started back in ancient Egypt to symbolize a never-ending cycle and the space inside the ring represents a gateway. Diamonds were added by the Sicilians because they believed that the stone was "forged by the fires of love." The placement of the engagement ring on the fourth finger of the left hand comes from the belief in Ancient Greece that our ring finger contains a vein that leads straight to our heart. This vein was known as the "vena amoris," which means the vein of love. We were disappointed to learn that the vena amoris does not actually exist, but it was pretty cool for the short time we believed it.

Gaining some insight on why we have all of these traditions makes them seem so much more special. But whether you use all, some, or none of these traditions in your wedding, we know your day will still be nothing short of perfect.

Xo, The I Do Team

College Sweethearts

"My husband Daniel and I met in Italian class in college at LSU.  He told me the first day he saw me walk into class he thought to himself, "I've got to get to know this girl."  As the semester went on he slowly tried to pursue me, asking me to be in his group for class assignments, saving me a seat in class, waiting for me outside the classroom after class, asking me to study with him, taking me for gelato.  Well, was not interested in dating him at the time an only wanted to remain friends.  Fast forward, I decide to give this guy a chance.  Daniel invites me to his camp on the river.  The first night there we danced on the pier and later that night underneath the stars.  Four years later he asks me to marry him in that same old classroom where we met in the same old seats we sat in and now we are college sweethearts and happily married"  -Marissa G Burgin 

Blushing Brides

We always love a beautiful blusher here at I Do Bridal! Blushers add the sweetest moments with your father or groom on your wedding day.  A bride can share that reveal moment with her father or she can have her groom flip the blusher back when they kiss for the first time as husband and wife. What we love about a blusher is that it adds so much romance to the wedding.  The photos are breathtaking and it is your once in a lifetime chance to have that reveal moment.  Blushers are not for every bride and every bride has their own unique style but we will love this classic tradition for a lifetime.  We hope it helps brides we serve at our Baton Rouge, La bridal boutique and our new bridal boutique location in Covington, La serving brides in Mandeville, New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. 

Its #Wedding Wednesday!

"One of my favorite parts of the day was doing a "first look" with the bridesmaids.  I didn't tell anyone a single thing about my dress so they all had different ideas of what the dress might be like.  As soon as they turned around to see me in the dress, everyone immediately started screaming!  They all agreed it was perfectly "me"!  Despite the rain, the day was absolutely perfect from beginning to end!  It was exactly what we hoped for and more!  I really felt like the best version of myself and how I had always envisioned myself on my wedding day".  -McKenzie Miller Hernandez 

Inger was stunning made the most beautiful bride! How sweet it was to help you find your dream gown and you couldn’t have looked more perfect! Cheers to the new Mr. and Mrs!

Chelsea glowed at her wedding

Chelsea looked lovely in her amazing wedding dress. The perfect love story from Miss to Mrs. Vegas. We love our brides.

Chelsea glowed at her wedding

Chelsea looked lovely in her amazing wedding dress. The perfect love story from Miss to Mrs. Vegas. We love our brides.

California dreaming

The new Mr. And Mrs. Harton literally took our breath away. Their California dream wedding has got to be one of our favorites + Alexs' Monique Lhuillier gown truly couldn't have been a more perfect wedding dress.

Rivini + Tana = Stunning

So blessed to LOVE what "I Do" ❤️

"Ramsey Roberts Sims and the ladies at I Do Bridal Couture, where this Bridal journey really started, are on another level in the Bridal World. Many many years ago whenever the store opened in Southdown's next to our Smoothie King I told my Dad we would get my dress from you. He often laughed at me because of obvious reasons but I never wanted to look anywhere else. Thank you for not only finding my dream dress but helping make our appointment a lasting memory for me and my parents."  Tana, it was such an honor to dress you for one of the most important days of your life, thank you for trusting us. You are beautiful inside + out and we just adore you and your family. @_vividphotography

Pure Grace in Amsale

Classic elegance at its best. Grace was an absolute beauty on her day + we were so unbelievably grateful to have helped her find the Amsale gown. Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. Morse! Xo! 💕#sayido

Tiffany + Liancarlo = Amazing

Bride, Tiffany McGlathery Doiron wearing the lovely Liancarlo.

Stephanie shines on her wedding day

Just, wow! We love seeing our brides happy and glowing and the new Mrs. Hoerner looked exactly that on her special day! Stephanie, you were nothing short of breathtaking. We absolutely loved working with you and we wish you a lifetime full of those gorgeous smiles with Ian! Xo!  Erin and Geoffrey Photography

Paige brings Alyne Rivini gown perfection

Nothing but perfection for this stunning bride of ours -- Paige is official a Mrs. Bradley! Her Alyne Rivini gown truly couldn't have been more perfect for her May wedding. We can't thank you enough, Paige, + we are so glad to have shared in such a special day! Xo, #sayido Kristin & Heather Photography

Take a stroll forever...

Take a stroll on this Monday with the new Mr + Mrs. Jordan came to us in a pinch and we couldn't love how her dream dress came to be. We loved seeing the amazing pictures of you and Eddie that you will cherish for a lifetime. #sayido @gingersnapaphoto (I Do Bridal Couture is a couture wedding dress boutique located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana)